The electricity problem in Lebanon is a very serious one yet we haven’t seen any significant progress in recent years. We have over a million Syrian refugees now, which means more electricity consumption hence more power cuts. Ever since I moved to my new house, I’ve been paying around $130-150 monthly for 10 amperes which aren’t even close to what we consume on a normal day. Take for example a regular working day where you get home tired and hungry after 2 hours of traffic, and just wish to heat up some food in the microwave and wash some clothes before you sleep. Once you turn the washing machine or the dryer on, you can’t use any other home appliance. Moreover, I can’t use my microwave if the electricity is off as it needs around 8 amperes to start and I would have to turn off the whole house just to start it. These are two silly examples on how the lack of electricity affects our every day-life and are nothing compared to the families who don’t have heating systems and have to rely on electrical heaters to stay warm and heat up the water. Of course I’m assuming you’re getting 10 amperes and not less as all generator owners tend to trick you. I’m lucky to have a decent guy run the generator.
This being said, Zahle’s move to provide its residents with 24/7 electricity is a huge accomplishment and a brave move against the generator mafia. We’ve all seen how the generator gangs demonstrated against EDZ’s initiative and even fired and damaged four transformers a couple of weeks ago. As a result and until the transformers are repaired, many residents will only get 12 hours of electricity and will be forced to pay generator owners for the rest.
Of course the government is to blame for everything that’s happening and the generator gangs are just filling a vacuum but corruption runs so deep in this country that politicians assign generator owners for certain areas and get paid monthly fees. The Economist wrote a long article on the Zahle incident and how bad the situation is. I personally believe we need more initiatives like the EDZ one to weaken these gangs and let people rally against them.
If some politicians and ministers wish to truly fix the electricity problem, they should start with their towns, cities and areas before tackling this whole mess. We need to decentralize this problem and any other problem as nothing will ever be accomplished otherwise. Zahle residents will not let generator owners win this battle because it concerns them directly and will significantly improve their lives and the city’s economy.
Isabel Roberts, who has lived in the area for 38 years, added: “These were lovely houses. People wanted these houses. They were lovely and clean. I mean you can see a house there in the middle of it. It’s like Beirut. It’s absolutely disgraceful.”
This is an excerpt from an article on a UK town called Country Durham, which was once a thriving mining community and is now a deserted town. Over 150 homes were left empty and the town now “looks like Beirut”. People have been unfortunately using this slogan for quite some time to refer to abandoned, destroyed or insecure places.
The use of the “Looks like Beirut” cliché was documented by a Lebanese blogger called Jad Aoun, who used to track down all articles and reports that used this worn-out slogan and send the authors “Looks Like Beirut” certificates “in recognition of the work done to keep the overused, worn-out, tired cliché “Looks like Beirut” alive” and where he’d thank them for their dedication to unoriginal comments.
50 couples in 6 different restaurants had their bills paid by Bank Audi as part of the bank’s Valentine campaign #BankAudiLovesMe. The couples were surprised by my good friends and the talented Uf Concepts guys who had prepared a song for the occasion.
I thought the idea was pretty cool and well executed. Check out the [video].
Since a lot of people have asked me about the Whitney Houston article I shared this morning, I asked a friend to pick up the Nadine Magazine from a nearby library and see if it’s there and it turned out to be true. Whitney Houston is still alive and is feeling sad over her daughter’s accident according to Nadine Magazine.
I honestly have nothing to say here. I can’t believe a magazine that only talks about stars, fashion and gossip doesn’t know that Whitney Houston has passed away, or worse that whomever read this piece of article didn’t see anything wrong with it.
Speaking of Nadine Magazine, check out this hilarious front page and headline that they had a year ago.
Here’s a bunch of funny stories that I picked up in the past few days. The Omak ad is hilarious and reminds me of that spa in Achrafieh that was called Ommak or something like that. As for the Whitney Houston article, it was shared by my friend Dyala but I couldn’t confirm yet if it’s a recent magazine or not. The sure thing is that Whitney Houston doesn’t have a daughter called Sarah.
Lebanese music producer & composer Jean-Marie Riachi released a Middle Eastern version of John Legend’s biggest hit ever and one of the best performing R&B songs of 2013/2014 “All of me”. Riachi basically added an oriental twist to the song and it turned out to be pretty cool.
Every day, I see drivers specially those with 4×4 vehicles trying to go from one side of the highway to the other to skip traffic, specially on the Dora highway. Aside from the fact that it’s against the law and considered very dangerous driving, I don’t understand why people are so reckless about their cars in Lebanon. Why would you put your life in danger and drive like an idiot? Why would you wreck your car if it’s a rental? What’s the logic behind that?
In all cases, I hope the picture above will be a lesson for all drivers to stop trying these stupid maneuvers.